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Old 10-05-2012, 12:13 AM
LawnSite Member
Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Kansas City, MO
Posts: 60
For you guys that mow churches, you'll love this story!

If there's one thing I've learned in business, especially the lawn business and doing work for churches...they are notorious, I mean NOTORIOUS for screwing you over and not batting an eye. I haven't lived the screw job once, oh no...I've lived it multiple times over my 15 years in the business. More times than one would think a church and it's managerial brethren would do to you. I've even brought it up to pastor that church folk are horrible at business relations and will screw up silly over money matters quicker than any other organization on earth, and he agrees with regret.

Most of my church screw overs take place when I've got the contract for mowing, everybody likes my quality and the sum I work for, it's all going great and then some wiseguy in the church thinks he can do it cheaper. He's privey to my bid, working on church properties or just asks a ton of questions from the church secretary, you can always find out. He doesn't claim to be better, oh's usually about saving the church money or getting in some service hours. Nothing to do with quality upgrade. Always a guy that doesn't quite have the chops for properties of such magnititude as most of my churches are larger, pretty difficult chores. The average professional cutter would be challenged let's say. A novice would get overwhelmed, and all of 'em eventually do just that.

I've had a 9 acre church in south KC for over 13 years. Love the property, high visibility, looks good when maintained, everybody in the part of town sees it, I take personal pride in this one. It's not just another paycheck you might say. First of April, I get a call from pastor saying that one of the members of the church would like to take a go at this job, buy himself the equipment, and give back. Never done any cutting whatsoever more than his own lawn. Zero commercial experience. The church by-laws state that if one of the church members can do the job for less, he automatically gets to try. At least until failure. Which eventually happens. I explain to the pastor that this has happened on this property once before and the same result will happen once again. This is a tough property. He knew what I was stating was cold, hard fact...but had to give the contract to this guy. There goes $300 every other week of the season!

Well, yesterday I get a call from the pastor with hat in hand, "Our guy didn't work think you can come by and take over like this experiment never happened?" He also stated that the guy told him early into it that he's in way over his head, looked easier from the street, but wanted to keep his word so he did it as long as he could stay afloat. Where have I heard that line before? Oh park bidding! When will they learn? Answer: never. There's a reason they call us "professionals", ladies and gentlemen out there who are in power positions of the church. You want disappointing results, hire one of your own church members. They'll deliver poor quality, miss cuts, awful edging and trimming, rarely keep the blades sharp and maintain the equipment, and make you wonder why you ever said "yes" to this fool in the first place. Keep the pro who knows how to mow, trim, and blow and let the ninny begging for church work...let him push snow! I don't ever hear anyone begging for that job!!!!
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